The first of a series of e-infrastructure workshops were held from 16-20 June, in Sofia, Bulgaria, targeting countries in the Eastern Partnership region specifically. Almost 50 people from universities, libraries and NRENs (national research and education networks) from ten Partnership and other Eastern European countries participated. Further workshops will follow later in the year.

TERENA organised the Sofia event as part of its Development Support activities and its work in the GÉANT project’s tasks in Digital Inclusion, Campus Best Practices, and User Access and Applications. The workshops were organised in co-operation with CEENET and the Campus Best Practices task led by CSC-Funet, were hosted by BREN, the Bulgarian NREN, and received funding from the EC via EAP Platform 4. The first three days were aimed at staff from NOCs (Network Operation Centres) and focused on network security training. The following days included a half-day on best practices in wireless networks, and a one-and-a-half day federated identity technology workshop aimed at managers and IT leaders.

Focus on federations

For TERENA the main focus was the federated identity workshop, which attracted 32 participants from 8 countries. The objective was to educate attendees on the policy issues, business case and deployment options related to the development and support of pan-European and global identity e-infrastructures.

Brook Schofield, TERENA Project Development Officer, explained that "members of the Eastern Partnership and their neighbouring countries have not been involved in building the body of knowledge around identity federations. So these events compress 10 years of experience to ensure their roadmap accelerates their participation in the global federation infrastructure."

Workshops to follow up on this federated identity event will provide in-depth technical training. An event focusing on future collaboration will align with the joint RoEduNet-RENAM conference in Chisinau, Moldova, on 11-13 September, and a training event by the GÉANT project’s Federation-as-a-Service task is shaping up for October 2014.

For more information, please visit TERENA's Development Support web pages.